The Yukon government has announced the recipients of the Prevention of Violence Against Aboriginal Women Fund.
An Aug. 18 statement says the government has awarded $25,000 each to the Whitehorse Aboriginal Women’s Circle (WAWC) and Carcross/Tagish First Nation (CTFN) for one-year projects. Both projects aim to address and prevent violence against Indigenous women and girls through support networks.
“The funded projects address preventing gender-based violence and align with Changing the Story to Upholding Dignity and Justice: Yukon’s Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, Girls and Two-Spirit+ People Strategy, notably Pillar 1: Strengthening Connections and Support,” the statement read.
Administered through the territorial government’s Women and Gender Equity Directorate, the fund was established in 2004 to provide financial support to Indigenous women’s organizations, registered societies and First Nation governments in recognition that Indigenous women and girls experience disproportionate rates of violence.
Per the statement, the fund requires that projects be “developed by and for Indigenous women and it provides funding opportunities for non-government organizations, First Nations and women’s organizations alike.”
In the 2023-2024 fiscal year, the fund will also distribute the second installment of a two-year fund to Champagne and Aishihik First Nations (CAFN) and the Skookum Jim Friendship Centre (SJFC).
“The funding to these organizations was previously announced in 2022,” the statement continued. “This funding will allow CAFN to continue with its weekly Women’s Circles for Connection initiative and SJFC to continue its Women of Wisdom project.”
The Strengthening Our Sisters program, run by the Whitehorse Aboriginal Women’s Circle, supports Indigenous women through the sale of their traditional arts and is aimed at helping women create economic opportunity through art sales and removing barriers.
“Through sharing of business knowledge, and securing tables at local community markets, coordination and promotion, this project offers a support network and the promotion of economic independence for Indigenous women,” the government statement reads.
With the funding, the CTFN Family Council, which is one of the recipients, will hold regular family gatherings over the spring, summer and fall. Each gathering will include a meal and community building activities, traditional cultural activities and discussions about the traditional roles of men and women and how to work together to keep our women, children and families safe.
The statement said “through engaging families, men and boys in these discussions about the Family Act, traditional roles and the value and strength of women and girls, they will be shown from a young age the incredible value of women and the importance of keeping our women safe.”
Jeanie McLean, the minister responsible for the Women and Gender Equity Directorate, said the contributions of the organizations are crucial as part of efforts to reduce violence targeted against Indigenous women.
“Community support networks are essential for both healing and violence prevention,” McLean said. “The work of these organizations will provide Indigenous women and girls with important programming that encourages a deeper connection with their community.”
Contact Patrick Egwu at firstname.lastname@example.org